It is pretty unfair for me to act like I have the answers. I'm not coaching. I'm not Vernon or in his circle. But here is my best shot at it.Vernon seemed to have a less than expected season, reading from the posts last year. Do you attribute that to the 3-4 formation or lack of skill improvement?
The results (or lack thereof) spoke for themselves. For people who watched his games somewhat regularly, you didn't see an impact player. For someone as highly recruited as Vernon, that is incredibly surprising. It is easy and convenient to blame it on defensive coaching. They are certainly part of the issue. I think the 3-4 formation has been a gigantic blunder. I believe that the defensive coaching staff has no trust in themselves or their players to be in any defense that could further expose their longstanding weak secondary preparation. So I think their solution to the problem is to have 8 guys instead of 7 in the second and third line of defense, which allows the possibility of another linebacker in coverage. But this has proven to be a huge mistake. Take advantage of your best bullet, so to speak. Put Vernon on a four man front, and I think you will see better results.
But even if the defensive coaching sucks and the scheme is awful (which I personally believe are accurate) - an elite national recruit should stand out and make plays despite all of that. Vernon didn't. His play was equally effective as when he first stepped on the field as a freshman.